We will probably wait until we get a travel date and maybe until after our first trip to come out on facebook and start these things though. For so long it has just been Rob and I's dream and she's been this secret we've been keeping, but, I realized that this blog is just as much for sweet girl as it is for us. I want to be able to remember the process so I can put it into a book for her and tell her story.
So, since we were last here, we completed our homestudy. That was stressful and took longer than I expected, but it's done. Our social worker is really nice, but it's hard for me to remember that this is just a business to her and she's not emotionally invested in sweet girl. We also compiled our registration dossier. Overall, I'm estimating that our registration dossier cost us about $2500 including the homestudy, medical exams, form filing fees, document copies, apostilles and shipping charges. Our agency says everything was great on that and as of Wednesday this week its on its way to EE (eastern europe - we aren't really supposed to use sweet girl's real name or country on our blog to protect the children). We also aren't supposed to share pictures, but I've decided that if I'm not sharing her name or her country then I should be able to show the sweet girl we're working towards! We sent electronic copies of all of the documents to Vita (who will be our in country facilitator) so she can start the translations. Hopefully by the time the documents get there, she will be done translating and can register us in our region. Once we are registered, they will give us a travel date of when we get to go meet Sweet Girl. We are hoping and praying that this will be in late June.
Also, we're working on our court dossier. This is another set of documents that we will have to submit to the judge. We are almost done with that, but we are missing three things. First, our doctor's medical license (which we have to submit a copy of) expires in June and since we don't submit our court dossier until July, then it won't be valid so we have to wait until he renews and get another copy of the license. Second, we filed our I-600a which is with the USCIS (Immigration). They review our application and our homestudy and then we have to go get fingerprinted with them and then they issue a ruling of whether we are allowed to adopt. We don't think there will be any problems with this, but the process takes a couple of months. We are also waiting for the FBI to process fingerprints we took at our local Sheriff's office and send us a letter stating that we have no criminal record. This takes several weeks as well.
Anyway, without further ado, let me introduce you to the piece of my heart I didn't know was missing, Sweet Girl: